Ukraine optimistic about partnership deal with EU

09:38, 03 June 2013
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Ukrainian Foreign Minister Leonid Kozhara on Friday expressed optimism over his country's chances to sign an association agreement with the European Union this year, according to Xinhua.

After meeting his Lithuanian counterpart Linas Linkevicius, Kozhara said Ukraine's application for an observer status in the Customs Union (CU) of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan is not an obstacle to closer Kiev-Brussels ties.

"This memorandum defines the status, which means that Ukraine may participate in the meetings of the CU without the right to vote. This memorandum is not legally binding and it is only organizational document," he said.

For his part, Linkevicius said the EU still hopes to sign association agreement with Ukraine during the Eastern Partnership summit in November.

"The EU and Lithuania are doing everything possible in order to achieve success and to sign the association agreement," he said.

Earlier on Friday, Linkevicius told journalists that Ukraine should carefully consider its foreign policy path and make its choice either to cooperate closely with the EU or with the CU.

On May 22, the Ukrainian government approved a memorandum for applying for the CU's observer.

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